Bravo: Even the Whimsy At A Few Museums Is About Art
AJBlog: Real Clear Arts Published 2015-04-30
AJBlog: Sandow Published 2015-04-30
So you want to see a show?
AJBlog: About Last Night Published 2015-04-30
Archives for April 2015
“Against all odds, the Sacramento Philharmonic & Opera is coming back with a series of small, free concerts beginning on May 5. The schedule includes 10 to 20 “arts invasion” concerts held in bars, coffee houses, schools, streetscapes, museums, and possibly the airport.”
“You know that if you re-release a cult show like the X-Files that the big fans of those shows are going to tweet that … And all of a sudden you’re getting all this kind of free publicity that’s aimed at exactly the audience you need.”
“Though the war is still raging, the government has already established a Ministry of Reconstruction in Damascus that has allegedly begun selling property. It has also burned land registry offices and deleted title entries, presumably to keep people from reclaiming their houses and businesses after the war ends (more than half of Syria’s citizens have fled the country).”
“Children may soon be taught “happiness” in schools. Being miserable is no longer socially acceptable. There are now computer programmes designed to influence the way we feel. Face-reading software will soon be able to identify moods. Global firms have “chief happiness” officers.”
“The relationship between Tate Britain and Modern, then, is really about what importance we give to old art and the concept of a national culture; and as it turns out, most people are more interested these days in the concept of internationalism and the culture of the contemporary, than what appears to be the stuffy, out-of-date world of narrow-minded nationalism; which is why almost 5.8 million visitors flocked to Tate Modern in 2014, and barely a quarter of that number made it to Tate Britain.”
“Valuing the importance of the story is still considered unambitious, as though anyone could do it. I suspect the opposite: it is because writing a good story is so hard that it is such a tempting target, to be dismissed as a lower, populist skill. In the absence of a capacity, posit a principle.”
“The point is that while music is as lucrative as ever for those at the top, what’s diminished, as in so many jobs, is the comfortable middle, where once upon a time musicians who never quite hit the big time could nonetheless make their living: not super-rich, but doing fine and enjoying a certain stability. What we are left with now is a kind of all or nothing, in which you either scale the dizzy heights or languish forlornly at the bottom.”
“The … relationship the Music Center has with its resident companies is arm’s-length, remote, not collaborative. Each resident company is in its own little private world; collaboration is not encouraged.”
“Before the internet, we all thought of art as a one-way phenomenon: there were creators and there were consumers. True or not, that’s what we thought. Now, though, the means of cultural production have been democratized, and art is becoming, in all genres, a many-to-many phenomenon. Anyone can make it—and everyone does—and we all still engage with it, too.”
“Perhaps we are entering a new age of radicalism individualism, in which the very idea of enjoying public space together is giving way to something more anarchic and carnivalesque.”
“I’ll venture to say dance audiences are better behaved than other crowds because they’re more immersed in the show. They’re not as distractible. That feeling you have, when a dancer leaps lightly across the stage and you’re carried along with her — that’s your brain, your whole sensorimotor system, responding sympathetically to another human body in motion.”
Laura Miller: “You can defend the right to speak without admiring the content of the speech. However, … it is the act of continuing to speak in the face of a [literally] murderous effort to silence them that the award commemorates, not the particular content of that speech.”
Glenn Greenwald has posted “the key documents giving rise to the controversy that has erupted inside PEN America over the award the group is bestowing on Charlie Hebdo” – most notably, correspondence between writer Deborah Eisenberg (who withdrew from the awards gala) and PEN Executive Director Suzanne Nossel.
“Muhammad ‘no longer interests me,’ Rénald Luzier, who works under the name Luz, said in an interview with the French magazine Les Inrockuptibles … ‘I’ve gotten tired of it, just as I got tired of drawing Sarkozy.'”
An angry Christopher Knight: “Being misquoted is one thing, but being completely misrepresented in an art museum wall text is quite another – especially when something I wrote more than 20 years ago is used as a slur concocted from the direct opposite of my critical opinion.”
“At top U.S. film schools, women and men are almost equally represented. … Yet between the day these women graduate and the day, a few years later, that their male college peers begin showing up in film credits, most women filmmakers vanish into obscurity.” Here’s a look at the ways it happens.
“If an overarching narrative exists, it’s willfully postmodern. … Stare long enough into the chaos, however, and a few patterns, can be divined.”
Sarah Larson: “The terms of e-laughter – ‘ha ha,’ ‘ho ho,’ ‘hee hee,’ ‘heh’ – are implicitly understood by just about everybody. But, in recent years, there’s been an increasingly popular newcomer: ‘hehe.’ Not surprisingly, it’s being foisted upon us by youth. What does it mean?”
“Q: Did you think people were surprised to hear you talk about these matters [i.e., his sex scandal] so candidly?
A: I didn’t know what else to do. I couldn’t think of a really good lie.”
“A glamorous German-born baroness who made her debut in the movies and on the Broadway stage in the early 1950s as a teenager and later reinvented herself as a television actress, writer and philanthropist.”
“Over the last four months, the boldface names have come, one after another, to this cozy downtown theater to see the show’s creator and star, Lin-Manuel Miranda, rap and sing and love and cheat and rise and fall and fight and die.”
“Over thirty-five years, from around 1794, when Goya, still in Madrid, was recovering from the devastating illness that left him permanently deaf and forced him to abandon grand court painting, to his death in Bordeaux in 1828, aged 82, he put together a sequence of eight ‘albums’ of brush and ink drawings. Often he added a laconic, ironic caption in black chalk.”
Adam Gopnik: “Words change meaning over time, and the quality of irony that we value today is omnipresent in Trollope – and that is the habit of turning objects and values upside down, of seeing big and little inverted.”
“[Behavioral science] suggests that play is also a crucial part of the full life of the human animal, and yet philosophers have said very little about it. Usually, if we see an appreciation of play, it’s an attempt to show its secret utility value – ‘See, it’s pragmatic after all!’ … All this is true of course, but one also wonders about the uniquely human meaning of play and leisure. Can we consider play and leisure as something with inherent value, independent of their accidental usefulness?”
That’s what the science appears to say (so far).
Approaching Justice & Democracy (in Beauty Class)
AJBlog: Jumper Published 2015-04-29
Can’t Buy Me Love
AJBlog: Engaging Matters Published 2015-04-29
AJBlog: Infinite Curves Published 2015-04-29
AJBlog: Performance Monkey Published 2015-04-29
The Frank Strazzeri Film
AJBlog: RiffTides Published 2015-04-28
Handel for hipsters: Revolution or red herring?
AJBlog: Condemned to Music Published 2015-04-27
“Perhaps best known as one of the founding members of the widely acclaimed Empire Brass Quintet, Smedvig enjoyed a busy career as a soloist with major orchestras, including those in Boston, Chicago and Cincinnati. In 1973, the 19-year-old Smedvig was hired as assistant principal trumpet of the Boston Symphony by music director Seiji Ozawa. Smedvig, then the youngest member of the orchestra, moved up to principal trumpet in 1979.”
“In many places, the detritus of centuries-old temples and palaces has been left unguarded, diminishing chances to eventually rebuild one of the world’s largest clusters of cultural heritage sites.”
“In the journal Musicae Scientiae, Michael Silverman and Jon Hallberg of the University of Minnesota describe a small program they created and implemented in which music students—specifically, classical pianists and guitarists—spent time performing in a primary care clinic waiting area. Subsequent interviews with staff members of the clinic found their reaction was overwhelmingly positive.”